Exhibition openings are fraut with danger; walking into a room full of people you don't know, getting stuck with a self confessed art expert who likes the sound of his/her own voice or worst still the VIP opening speech that drones on and on.
All One held none of these fears. Recreated in this humble gallery was the community of Sommers Bay; Naomi Howard's home. Every person who entered the space was warmly welcomed and left to peruse the 27 works that consisted of large paintings and ceramic sculptures. Naomi opened the exhibition with an impassioned and honest speech that paid homage to the many indigenous communities she has visited in central Australia.
While I must confess to having worked with Naomi, I would like to think that I remain relatively objective when it comes to her work. Curated by her friend, Justis, who lives in Sommers Bay, this is a lovely exhibition that evoke strong senses of the Tasmanian bush and coastal landscape. She uses intensely vivid colours that connect us immediately with the environment.
Naomi has been painting for more than 30 years and it is her humour, passion and integrity for her work that makes it such a joy to experience. Her latest exhibition, All One is on until late February at Sidespace Gallery, Salamanca Arts Centre, Hobart.